Getting back in the water

I have to get up and earn the day.
You know that feeling, right?
When afterwards you’ve claimed it all –
a cold water righteousness.
So I move, and the westerly moves along with me
sending a whiff of sulpher up the floorboards.
On the way I check the storm water creeks
 (for the tide) taking note of beached shopping trolleys
and the girls still working their early (or late) Islington shift.
The light has already cracked the harbour
throwing back stainless steel and glass in its mirror
and despite their earnest call to
rebrand and revitalise and re this and re that
there is still a ratbag in this city
growling awake every morning scratching its balls
and sometimes that ratbag, she can really turn it on.
A dawn show that lights this peninsula like nowhere else –
I never thought it would be so lovely. So pretty.
 (they all say that)
And that morning colour
mixed with coffee and salt water – 
it’s a heady mix.
You won’t meet that colour any other time or place,
apart from on a page, or at dusk…
But then you have to share it with everybody else.

When you visit for the first time
And at the start of the day when only the joggers
and dogs can see you 
I promise to throw you from the top of the cliff
At the edge of the terraced park
Down into the bogey hole.
They say it’s not safe but, you know…whatever.
Deep and cool and cut by convicts
I’ll throw you down.
They sent the worst of them here
Those ratbags from way back.
It’s in every crack and coal seam
Beneath every glittering new facade
So when you come you should scratch this City
Yes there. The stories.
I’ll give you a map made of songs
And you’ll understand –
This place meets the morning with more
than pretty geography.

Dixon Park looks like a bowl of grass
Nothing grows here
 (apart from dogs)
There’s a white timber fence that
tracks its way down the stretch from Bar to Merewether
 (I have no idea what it’s meant to keep out)
but it’s very useful on days like this.
The swell makes for a magnet
We sit here too freaked to go out
And despite my sore arse and cold hands,
I can’t move – and then the morning creeps into the day
And I’m late (again).